Facebook fan acquisition: $1.50 CPA to less than $.50 in 3 days #socialmedia #optimization

2014-05-10 cpf chartWanted to share a quick anecdote from my latest marketing experiment in social media. I’ve been involved in several fan acquisition campaigns, with varying degrees of success. Like any other marketer, I like to seek out case studies, share data and learn as much as possible. With that in mind, here’s some stats from my fan acquisition on Facebook so far.

  • Campaign goal: drive likes for a new brand at a low cost per acquisition.
  • Secondary goal: drive up engagement and overall awareness for the brand.
  • Measurement tool: Facebook Page Insights and Ads manager.

Naturally, any brand wants to attract fans, followers and engagement organically. However, when you’re first starting out with a blank slate, it’s critical to start to seed the campaign with a combination of paid and earned placements. With Twitter, a blog and zero other social media, I’ve been able to attract 33% organic fans, 67% paid for fans to the brand. Let’s skip to the campaign results, shall we?

Ad unit 1: CTR was abysmal, at about 1%, poor targeting (right rail, non desktop) resulted in overall cost per fan of $1.16 – not terrible, but not great.

Ad unit 2: Fixed up targeting, changed creative from a generic image with no text to a more provacative, category centric image. CTR improved to nearly 2% but the cost per fan, or CPF, was still about $.76. Better, but not ideal, based on the category and chatting with other marketers.

Ad unit 3: Same image as ad unit #2, same targeting, however this time the ad unit had a compelling message. A reason to believe, so to speak, and a reason to click. CTR shot up to over 3% and best of all, CPF dropped to $.46 cents (so far). Even better, one actual, bonafide prospect clicked through to the target website AND completed the marketing funnel. At a $30 CPA for a single conversion, it’s far too expensive a strategy to leverage the fan acquisition as a conversion driver.

However, if you look at the goals above, sales and funnel completion were not part of the campaign. Not even as a primary or secondary metric. The fact that I derived, potentially, enough revenue to justify the fan acquisition campaign based on the LTV of prospects is irrelevant. The main objectives: acquire fans, drive down cost over time and learn, have all been reached.

Hopefully this is of some help to anybody who’s starting out on a fan acquisition campaign or is curious about how early metrics should pan out. Happy Saturday.

Time for me to get off the computer and enjoy some sunshine.

PS: No, the numbers in the chart are not actuals. The trend line is right, but the case study happened over a period of less than five days :) I wanted to show a larger picture and bigger trend to make the changes in fan acquisition results more clear in the visual.